Chennai: Top ECI officials, including Election Commissioners Sushil Chandra and Ashok Lavasa, held an all-party meeting in the city today, in view of the 18 April polls.
Representatives from all registered parties took part in the meeting, which also saw the participation of Director General (Expenditure) Dilip Sharma, and Deputy Election Commissioners Dhirendhra Ojha and Sandeep Saxena.
During the meeting, the representatives put forth several points for the consideration of the officials and also requested the poll body to hold the election in a free and fair manner.
Speaking to mediapersons after the meeting, senior AIADMK leader and Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar said they have asked the ECI to ensure that cash is not distributed to the voters.
“The ECI must investigate the Rs 32 crore seized in Vellore. If it is related to the DMK candidate, necessary action must be taken against him. We are ready to contest in the by-election for the four Assembly constituencies that are left out. It is the ECI that should decide when the by-polls for these constituencies should be held,” he said.
Similarly, Thirumalaiswamy, who represented the BJP at the meeting, said following the huge amount of cash seized from DMK treasurer Durai Murugan’s places, they have requested the ECI to disqualify DMK’s Vellore candidate and Durai Murugan’s son Kathir Anand and take necessary action against the party as well.
“Attacks were made on Ramanathapuram BJP candidate during which an AIADMK cadre was injured. We have requested for additional protection for BJP candidates,” he said.
He further said request was also made to instal CCTV cameras inside and outside the polling booths.
“The ECI officials have agreed to consider our requests,” he added.
DMK MP R S Bharathy said they have requested to change the police officers not doing their duty.
Following the meeting with the party representatives, the ECI officials held discussions with Chief Secretary Girija Vaidhyanathan, DGP Rajendran and Home Department Secretary Niranjan Mardi and other senior officials. The ECI officials are expected to meet the election observers tomorrow in which Income-Tax officials are also expected to take part.
Photo: C Santhosh